Today in our Mamas Circle we dove deep into how having a baby - whether it's your first, second, third or more - shifts your priorities. There were collective feelings of frustration, guilt, and complete overwhelm about adding this new role as mom into our already full lives.
We are defined for most of our adult lives by our work outside the home. We get paid to do this work, we often receive fulfillment in doing this work and we're usually pretty good at it. As women, we're most often the ones saying "yes!" and are shaped by our culture to be accommodating, people pleasing, and to do our very best every single day.
Then we become mothers.
And we start to question... "Do I even like my job?" "What happens if I have to put in fewer hours?" "I know I need to put boundaries in place but HOW?!" "What if I want to stay home with this baby?" "Who even AM I?!"
We wonder how we can make it all work and still feel valued.
Sometimes we leave our jobs. We may take extended time off or reduce hours. Often we keep the same hours and "coast" for a while. Or dive right back into it.
It's all welcome.
It's all valid.
You are a wonderful, worthy, hard-working mother.
When I had my first baby I started a new job. I quit after 2 months because I missed the first time she rolled over and had the realization that I wanted to be a bigger part of her life.
In the almost 5 and a half years since she was born, there have been seasons of feeling completely supported and others where I felt like I was drowning. But the more I've turned toward what I and my family need and away from what society expects of me it's felt more right.
But that doesn't make it easy. We live in a culture where motherhood is not valued, where we need to be climbing the corporate ladder, have a "side gig" or "lean in" all the time. It's incredibly hard to prioritize our family's needs, much less our own.
Which is where you come in.
If you've taken a different path - whether in early motherhood, because of the pandemic, or for some other reason entirely, we'd love to hear about it.
Because when we normalize leaning out it can become an easier option for those who feel the desire or the need to do it their own way.
Thoughts on pregnancy, birth and motherhood.